Etihad Rail has awarded a contract to India’s PCM Strescon Overseas Ventures for the supply of sleepers for the first phase of the UAE’s $11bn federal railway project.

PCM Strescon will also be responsible for constructing a sleeper manufacturing facility. It supplied more than 2.6 million sleepers for the North-South minerals railway in Saudi Arabia.

Etihad Rail is currently inviting companies to prequalify by 14 July for the contract to supply railway maintenance equipment (MEED 26:6:11). The company also received 12 bids on 1 June for the civil engineering contract, which covers civil structures, systems, facilities and track work.

A US-based group comprising Aecom and Parsons International are project management consultants on the project. The UK’s Atkins will carry out preliminary engineering for the entire railway.

The first phase of the railway involves building a 265-kilometre track between the port of Ruwais and gas fields at Shah and Habshan. The first part of the work will involve building the line from Ruwais to Habshan, which will be able to transport 10,000 tonnes a day (t/d) of granulated sulphur. This will increase to 20,000 t/d when the line is completed to Shah.